Sharing Research Data and Intellectual Property Law: A Primer by Michael W Carroll

Abstract: Sharing research data by depositing it in connection with a published article or otherwise making data publicly available sometimes raises intellectual property questions in the minds of depositing researchers, their employers, their funders, and other researchers who seek to reuse research data. In this context or in the drafting of data management plans, common questions are (1) what are the legal rights in data; (2) who has these rights; and (3) how does one with these rights use them to share data in a way that permits or encourages productive downstream uses? Leaving to the side privacy and national security laws that regulate sharing certain types of data, this Perspective explains how to work through the general intellectual property and contractual issues for all research data.

Citation: Carroll MW (2015) Sharing Research Data and Intellectual Property Law: A Primer. PLoS Biol 13(8): e1002235. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1002235.
Published: August 27, 2015, Copyright: © 2015 Michael W. Carroll. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

NISO (National Information Standards Organization) Publication on Research Data Management

The National Information Standards Organization (NISO) has launched a new Primer Series on information management technology issues with the publication of the first primer on the topic of RDM. The primer on Research Data Management provides an overview of how data management has changed in recent years, and outlines best practices for the collection, documentation, and preservation of research data. The importance of creating a data management plan (DMP) before beginning a research data project is emphasized. Crucial questions regarding how the data will be managed are answered ahead of time in a DMP, thus making it easier for the researcher to collect and document the data properly for future use and reuse. Creating research data that is easily reproducible and transparent is the ultimate goal, and following the guidelines in this primer can help educate researchers to ensure their data is available for others. The differences between publishing papers and publishing datasets and the citation challenges the data community are working on solving are also discussed.

Full text: Research Data management by Carly Strasser

Complete announcement:

Announcing a new transdisciplinary Glossary for research data management

Research Data Canada (RDC) in partnership with the international Consortia Advancing Standards in Research Administration Information (CASRAI) is pleased to announce the launch of a PILOT for a new interactive Glossary containing 500+ draft terms and definitions to support work in the field of research data management. The glossary is publicly available under a Creative Commons Attribution Only license (CC-BY) at

The Glossary is meant to be a practical reference for individuals and working groups concerned with the improvement of research data management, and as a meeting place for further discussion and development of terms. Each term has a unique identifier and a URL that can be used as a tool to enhance reading comprehension of documents by hyperlinking terms to their definition. The aim is to create a stable and sustainably governed glossary of community accepted terms and definitions, and to keep it relevant by maintaining it as a ‘living document’ that is upd! ated when necessary. The URL for each term contains a link to a discussion page to complete the feedback loop with the community of users. The glossary is developed and maintained by RDC’s Standards & Interoperability Committee (RDC-SINC) in collaboration with CASRAI.

Walter Stewart, Coordinator

UK research data management experts at the CSIR

Funding bodies are increasingly requiring evidence of adequate and appropriate provisions for data management and curation in new grant funding applications. At the same time, publicly-funded data is increasingly required to be openly accessible for researchers to build on and for the wider research community to benefit from. The Network of Data and Information Curation Communities (NeDICC), which the CSIR is currently chairing, in collaboration with the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) in the UK, recently presented a workshop on research data management practices and principles. The aim of the workshop was to provide participants with the basic knowledge to start managing data at their respective institutions.

The workshop was influenced by important role players and experts in the field of digital curation, namely Joy Davidson (Associate Director, DCC), Sarah Jones (Senior Institutional Support Officer, DCC), Jim Mullins (Dean of Libraries, Purdue University), Elias Makonko (Research Data Curator, HSRC), and Anwar Vahed (Head: ICT for Earth Observation (ICT4EO) & DIRISA Manager).

The event, which took place on August 11 at the CSIR, was attended by 70 librarians, information specialists and research-assisting personnel from universities, universities of technology, and research councils across the country.

Following the workshop, NeDICC members, comprising data librarians and data curators from the ARC, CSIR, HSRC, the University of Pretoria, UNISA and Wits, participated in a half-day round table discussion with mentioned DCC staff members. Following the discussion very specific focus areas were identified as follow-up activities. These will be addressed in partnership with the DIRISA initiative. The three most important of these are the creation of a national web-based tool to support the creation of research data management plans, an investigation into a tiered system of trusted data repositories, and to establish very specific international collaboration agreements with established research data management stakeholders.

Article by Louise Patterton – CSIR Information Services

A short note on DMPs

The following was received from Herman Stehouwer, Research Data Alliance (RDA):
Dear active-DMP group,
Based on our recent activities with the European Infrastructures and several conversations we have created a very short (and rather pointed) note to kickstart some discussion on DMPs in general. One of the four points in this note is on the need for DMPs to be more active/adaptable. The plan is to turn this into an lively workshop around Q4/Q1 for the European discussion.
I appreciate all comments, especially comments on the active/adaptable

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